Believe it or not, the day has come! Stores are flashing its arrival – taunting us to dive in with excitement. Some of us dread the task, as we cringe at marketing everywhere we look. Oh, the audacity of interrupting the beautiful summer weather and our routine of no routines! Yet, there are many who embrace the celebration of Back-To-School Shopping!  It is their duty, joy and triumph as they welcome the challenge of finding the perfect outfits and displaying the latest styles from hair ties to shoe laces and everything in between.

But what happens when fashion distorts our reflection of Christ?

Isn’t everyone wearing the latest trends? Hasn’t modesty adapted to the fads of today? The heart has good intention in desiring beauty, right?

Sister, are you asking the right questions? Are you seeking the best source for the answers? The world’s fashions change and styles are swift to fade, but there is one thing that doesn’t change – God’s word. So what does God’s unchanging word say about our attire?

“…Women are to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, adorning themselves not with elaborate hairstyles or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God,” 1 Timothy 2:9-10 (ESV).

“She is clothed with dignity and strength,” Proverbs 31:25 (ESV).

Sweet sister, if you are a follower of Jesus, then your focus should be to honor him in every aspect of your life, including how you clothe yourself. Now, am I saying you need to wear turtle necks in July or toe-covering shoes in winter? No, although I do recommend those shoes in the North! Our priority should be the attire of our heart first. Are we clothing ourselves in God’s Truth, seeking to display our true value as his children, and seeking his will with all our might? Is our first thought when we wake up “What am I going to wear?” or “How can I be a reflection of Jesus today?”

As daughters of Christ, we should be encouraging one another more in our walk with Christ than in our walk at the mall. Our number one outfit should be that of strength and dignity. The Apostle Paul describes such an outfit in his letter to the Ephesians: the armor of God. The best part is, no purchase is necessary. All you need to do is ask for the strength and guidance to put it on.

So as you pick out your clothes for school and work this week, select the Belt of Truth to keep your tongue from gossip and slander, tighten your sparkly sandals of the Gospel of Peace to guide you down the halls, and secure the Helmet of Salvation over your locks of hair to keep you focused on Christ, resting in his assurance. Take the Breastplate of Righteousness off the hanger and honor the Lord in your interactions with others. In your right hand, take up the Sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, to be your source of strength. In your left hand, hold the Shield of Faith to protect you from the flaming darts of worldly lies. And as you set your alarm each night, give yourself an extra few minutes to start your day with your Designer and to pray for those you will cross paths with that day.

When we focus more on our spiritual clothing and Designer, the importance of fitting in with the latest fad loses its priority. Dear one, enjoy your time shopping with your sisters – but dress yourself in his grace and truth first.

And sister, you are beautiful!

Susan Rueter

Author Susan Rueter

Susan Rueter is married to her best friend, has four little superheroes, and lives and works in Central Minnesota. She loves coffee, following Jesus, and seeing women connect across generations and find their beauty in Christ–even in the midst of changing diapers, finding worms in laundry, and navigating around fallen Legos.

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